Owing to the different circumstances which have attended their migrations, the Thai peoples have attained to varying degrees of civilization.
LAOS, or LAOTIONs, an important division of the widespread Thai or Shan race found throughout Indo-China from 28° N.
This Thai family includes the Shans proper, and the Siamese.
The name Lao, which appears to mean simply "man," is the collective Siamese term for all the Thai peoples subject to Siam, while Shan, said to be of Chinese origin, is the collective Burmese term for those subject to Burma.
But the pure Laos are still distinguished by the high cheek-bones, small flat nose, oblique eyes, wide mouth, black lank hair, sparse beard, and yellow complexion of the Thai and other branches of the Mongol family.
SIAM (known to its inhabitants as Muang Thai), an independent kingdom of the Indo-Chinese peninsula or Further India.
The Siamese (Thai) call their country Muang Thai, or" the country of the Thai race,"but the ancient name Muang Sayam has lately been revived.
The gradual evolution of the Siamese (Thai) from the fusion of Lao-Tai and Khmer races has been mentioned above.
Thereafter the north, the west and the south-west of Siam, comprising the kingdom of Swankalok-Sukhotai, and the states of Suphan and Nakhon Sri Tammarat (Ligore), with their sub-feudatories, were reduced by the Siamese (Thai), who, during their southern progress, moved their capital from Sukhotai to Nakhon Sawan, thence to Kampeng Pet, and thence again to Suvarnabhumi near the present Kanburi.
Meanwhile the ancient state of Lavo (Lopburi), with its capital at Sano (Sornau or Shahr-i-nao), at one time feudatory to Swankalok-Sukhotai, remained the last stronghold of the Khmer, although even here' the race was much modified by Lao-Tai blood; but presently Sano also was attacked, and its fall completed the ascendancy of the Siamese (Thai) throughout the country.
Norman, The Far East (London, 1904); Bishop Pallegoix, Description du royaume Thai ou Siam (Paris, 1854); H.
Certis, these ymages of hemselfe may do nouther gode nor yvel to mennis soules, but thai myghtten warme a man's body in colde, if thai were sette upon a fire."
The financial year 1862 closed with a deficit of more thai 16,000,000, which increased in 1866 to 28,840,000 on account 0 the preparations for the war against Austria.
Alongside these fanciful conceptions there existed fatl~ sore sober view, according to which the earth was a long lege, l plain, and the sky an iron roof supported by the tops of thai intains or by four pillars TflJ at the cardinal points.
Although the Nil, water is abundantly charged with alluvium, the annual deposit b1 the river, except under extraordinary circumstances, is smaller thai might be supposed.
Of its course the Lantsan Kiang, or, as it soon becomes known among the Thai peoples inhabiting its rugged valley, the Mekong, is very little known to us.
(iv.) The Siamese or Thai, who speak a monosyllabic language of the Chinese type, but written in an Indian alphabet, represent a late invasion from southern China, whence they descended about the 13th century.